Veteran Baltimore Ravens safety Ed Reed has made a career of his ball-hawking instinct and devotion to film study to help the Ravens boast one of the league's best secondaries for nearly a decade. But could his now 11-year career in Baltimore be coming to an end?
A new report from NFL.com says that one executive scouting at the East-West Shrine Game said he wouldn't be surprised if the Ravens allow the 34-year-old to test the free agent market. And if Reed and his 61 career interceptions do hit free agency, the veteran's talents likely would attract plenty of interest from around the league.
Reed might not have to look much further than the opposite sideline during Sunday's AFC Championship Game to find a possible new home if the Ravens aren't interested in retaining him. Despite compiling another big season and making another AFC title game, the New England Patriots ranked near the bottom of the league in pass defense in 2012, and even a late-season addition of Aqib Talib couldn't right all of the Patriots secondary's wrongs.
Reed, too, has long been a favorite of Bill Belichick's and the focused, detail-oriented coach and the intelligent veteran safety would likely fit together nicely.
The Indianapolis Colts could also serve as a soft landing spot for Reed, who is reportedly very close to Colts head coach Chuck Pagano. Pagano made his name in the NFL with the Ravens while serving as Baltimore's secondary coach from 2008 to 2010 and as defensive coordinator in 2011 before being hired to helm the Colts in 2012.
The Colts also ranked in the bottom half of the league in pass defense and the addition of Reed to their secondary could easily help to improve a team already on the upswing.